Recent Op-Eds

In politics, a lot of the attention is often on Washington, D.C., but as your U.S. senator, I’ve always believed that some of my most important work happens when I’m home in South Dakota with you. And while I’m fortunate to have the most talented and dedicated public servants that exist working in my South Dakota and Washington offices, there’s no advisor’s opinion that I value more than yours.

It’s why after a long week in Washington, I’m always eager to get home and hit the road. Along the way, I really enjoy meeting new people and seeing old friends. It keeps me energized and focused on my top priority, which is delivering for the people of South Dakota.

On a recent trip around the state, I attended Memorial Day services at the Black Hills National Cemetery (BHNC) near Sturgis. Being there, surrounded by America’s war heroes, gave greater context to what it means to serve and sacrifice. These men and women deserve a place like the BHNC, and by recently sending a bill to the president that will nearly double the cemetery’s size, I was glad to have played a small role in ensuring its legacy will live on for generations to come.  

While I was home, I also had the chance to connect with the Aberdeen Chamber of Commerce’s Agribusiness Committee to discuss the farm bill. The current bill expires this fall, and it’s one of my top priorities to see that a pro-agriculture farm bill lands on the president’s desk as soon as possible. I’ve introduced nearly a dozen farm bill-related bills over the last 15 months, and I’m working hard to ensure as many of them as possible are included in the final bill.

I wouldn’t miss the opportunity to stop by the annual Boys State and Girls State programs in Aberdeen and Vermillion, which is why I was glad to have been invited to attend again this year. It’s so refreshing to see the next generation of leaders hard at work, eager to learn and lay the groundwork for their future. I can say with confidence, the future of South Dakota is bright, and it’s in good hands.    

It’s always nice to see firsthand the positive effect that policies coming out of Washington have on South Dakotans. For example, Elk Point’s AaLadin Industries, which I recently had the opportunity to visit, is passing along expanded benefits, including bonuses and wage increases, to its employees as a result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which I helped write. More than 1 million jobs have already been created nationwide in the few short months since this new pro-growth bill became law, a milestone that delivers on a promise Republicans made to the American people.

I closed out my latest trip around South Dakota with Commissioner Brendan Carr of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). He joined me for the ribbon cutting at the new Sioux Falls Tower and Communications office. I appreciate the work Commissioner Carr does at the FCC, under which the Commerce Committee – the committee I chair in Washington – has jurisdiction. The FCC will play a large role in implementing my MOBILE NOW Act, which was signed into law in March 2018 and will help set the stage for the next generation in mobile broadband technology.

To everyone throughout the state who continues to share their advice and ideas with me, I can’t say this enough: Thank you. I couldn’t do my job without you, and I’m continually humbled by your kindness, generosity, and hard work. There’s no question that South Dakota is the best place to live, work, and raise a family, and I’ve never been more certain of it.